Submission of a complaint

Article 1 definitions

In this office complaints procedure, the following definitions apply:

  • complaint: any written expression of dissatisfaction by or on behalf of the client towards the lawyer or the persons working under his responsibility about the conclusion and execution of a contract for services, the quality of the service or the amount of the invoice, not being a complaint as referred to in section 4 of the Lawyers Act;
  • complainant: the client or his representative who makes a complaint known;
  • complaints officer: the lawyer charged with handling the complaint;

Article 2 scope of application

  1. This office complaints procedure applies to every assignment agreement between First Lawyers and the client.
  2. First Lawyers is responsible for handling complaints in accordance with the office complaints procedure.

Article 3 objectives

This office complaints procedure aims to:

  1. establishing a procedure for handling complaints from clients in a constructive manner within a reasonable period of time;
  2. establishing a procedure to determine the causes of client complaints;
  3. maintaining and improving existing relationships through good complaints handling;
  4. train employees in customer-oriented response to complaints;
  5. improving the quality of service with the help of complaint handling and complaint analysis.

Article 4 information at the start of the service

  1. This office complaints procedure has been made public. Before entering into the contract for services, the lawyer points out to the client that the office has an office complaints procedure and that this applies to the services provided.
  2. First Lawyers has stated in the contract for services and/or via the general terms and conditions to which independent party or body a complaint that has not been resolved after handling can be submitted in order to obtain a binding decision and has made this known in the order confirmation.
  3. Complaints as referred to in Article 1 of this office complaints procedure that have not been resolved after handling will be submitted to the competent court in The Hague.

Article 5 internal complaints procedure

  1. If a client approaches the office with a complaint, the complaint will be forwarded to dr. A.W. Duthler, who thereby acts as complaints officer.
  2. The complaints officer informs the person about whom the complaint has been lodged of the submission of the complaint and gives the complainant and the person against whom the complaint has been made the opportunity to explain the complaint.
  3. The person about whom the complaint has been made tries to find a solution together with the client, whether or not after the intervention of the complaints officer.
  4. The complaints officer will deal with the complaint within four weeks of receipt of the complaint or will inform the complainant about any deviation from this term, stating the reasons, and stating the term within which a decision on the complaint will be given.
  5. The complaints officer will inform the complainant and the person who is the subject of the complaint in writing of the opinion on the merits of the complaint, whether or not accompanied by recommendations.
  6. If the complaint has been satisfactorily resolved, the complainant, the complaints officer and the person against whom the complaint has been made will sign the opinion on the merits of the complaint.

Article 6 Confidentiality and free complaint handling

  1. The complaints officer and the person about whom the complaint has been made will observe confidentiality when handling the complaint.
  2. The complainant does not owe any compensation for the costs of handling the complaint.

Article 7 responsibilities

  1. The complaints officer is responsible for the timely handling of the complaint.
  2. The person about whom the complaint has been made will keep the complaints officer informed about any contact and a possible solution.
  3. The complaints officer will keep the complainant informed about the handling of the complaint.
  4. The complaints officer keeps the complaint file up to date.

Article 8 complaint registration

  1. The complaints officer registers the complaint with the subject of the complaint.
  2. A complaint can be classified into several subjects.

If applicable, the complaint will also be reported to the relevant liability insurer.